Yvonne Balcer Dear Editor:Jersey City is introducing legislation that might have life changing consequences for its residents. The first is the introduction of recreational marijuana. While the state benefits greatly, most likely the local residents will be stuck with higher car insurance rates with undeniably increase of car accidents. Recreational marijuana has contributed to more fatal accidents according to the Denver Post, the daily newspaper in Colorado. It is the reason many towns in New Jersey said they will not have recreational marijuana; they do not want to put that strain on their police enforcing traffic violations.The second is the removal of burlesque from the city codes. While I will admit, there are more racy videos and movies on the internet, those archaic laws have kept Jersey City from becoming Newark with their adult entertainment establishments and Times Square during the 1960s to the 1980s. Times Square was a seedy place when Burlesque, go-go clubs, and peep shows littered the area. Adult entertainment attracts crime.Newark is still a high crime while Times Square has improved its image when New York City closed down these adult entertainment places. This is similar to the State of New Jersey changing the requirements for bail because they felt it discriminated against poor people. Yet even Newark Mayor Ras Baraka said too many defendants facing firearms charges are allowed back onto the streets within hours of their arrest. This is another example of a bill being passed without addressing the negative impact of a law.In the need to be politically correct, I don’t think Jersey City has thought of the consequences that might affect the residents of Jersey City.
Homeowners, businesses, and renewable energy manufacturers, installers and developers met today to call for the expansion of Vermont’s net-metering program. At a State House press conference, members of Renewable Energy Vermont (REV), the state’s leading trade association for the renewable energy industry joined Vermont home and business owners and leadership from the House Natural Resources and Energy Committee to discuss the role of Vermont’s net-metering law in creating jobs and deploying home-grown renewable energy to Vermonters.Afterward, the group testified before the House Natural Resources and Energy Committee.‘Net metering has been a cornerstone program for Vermonters growing locally produced, renewable power,’ says REV Board Chair and VERA V.P. Martha Staskus. ‘Expanding the program will spur the development of new renewable energy systems, produce additional economic growth, and create more jobs at no cost to the state.’Net metering allows Vermont rate-payers to generate their own power using renewable energy systems. Excess power they generate can be fed back to their utilities, running their electric meters backwards. This successful program originally enacted by the Vermont Legislature in 1998 has resulted in nearly 1,300 solar, wind, and digester installations across the state with a total capacity of over 11MW of local renewable power. About Renewable Energy Vermont (REV), www.revermont.org(link is external)REV is a nonprofit, nonpartisan trade association representing nearly 300 businesses, individuals, colleges and others committed to reducing our reliance on fossil fuels and expanding the availability of renewable sources of energy in Vermont. MONTPELIER, Vermont | January 28, 2011 – ###